Jan 25, 2012

Education - our way

"A lot of people in our industry haven't had very diverse experiences. So they don't have enough dots to connect, and they end up with very linear solutions without a broad perspective on the problem." Steve Jobs
(quote from which I guess that Steve was also a Little Prince book fan - "Caminando en lĂ­nea recta no puede uno llegar muy lejos." :)

One year ago I was writing about the growing gap between the new generations and the old education system. I also remember my mother (who is a teacher) saying that she would really like to have another approach in classes, but the system is constraining. Nowadays I am pleased to see that things started to move in the right direction, we do not wait for the education system to change, but we change it! With a non-linear solution.

Yes, we change it. We - the new generations that got the power as journalists, web developers, entrepreneurs. Apple is pushing ipads in schools to substitute books, reinvents classes through iTunesU, both Amazon and Apple now let you publish books for free, Orange made a partnership with Wikipedia to provide free access to its clients, YouTube launches Education, journalists at Forbes write about how the education system and the workplaces do not fit the new generations, Google is spreading Chromebooks in schools, some countries have internet as a basic right for people etc. And this is just the beginning.

In the end is just providing the world with the right tools. 
"Computers themselves, and software yet to be developed, will revolutionize the way we learn." Steve Jobs
And we will take it from there.
The systems are managed bottom-up from now on, not the other way around anymore. 

PS: Ok, there is also something less altruistic about the move into education these players made:
- They get to have smarter future employees. And also smarter future entrepreneurs who will exit to them.
- They get to have brand loyalty since consumers' childhood.

Jan 17, 2012

If you came from Mars, you would think we're worshiping screens here

This is a good quote from last edition of Next Conference (my Next Conference 2011 review here)
Meanwhile, it became even more obvious. Just look around. Smartphones, tablets, laptops. Oh and I hope you did not miss the new toys from CES that are preparing to "invade" us soon:

Now that we have all those shiny goodies it is time to stop just being childishly amazed, but to realize the way they are changing our lives. Did I say change? Let's better say improve our lives. Or no, even better: enable us behave even more naturally.

Yes. I believe you should not use a mouse or touchpad to click on the screen, but use multitouch screens or eye-controlled surfaces. I believe you should not read an article in a printed magazine and then write the website in your browser, but to scan the QR code with your phone and go directly. I believe you should not exchange business cards at conferences and then introduce them in your agenda and social networks, but to wave your phone next to the other's and automatically connect on social networks. I believe you should not use a car navigator, but to have the way displayed with augmented reality on your car front window. And so on....

So now that we have all these and each day much more, how do we make the best use of them? What are the smartest business partnerships? What are the smartest marketing moves? What are the smartest designed applications? And in the end, how can we as consumers benefit the most?

Many answers will be given at Next Conference 2012 in Berlin, on 8th and 9th May. Main topic: Post Digital.

"In that sense what Post Digital actually is is the end of the beginning. It marks the transition from the era where we’re excited by the shiny new digital toys that we have, and start to become excited by the changes that these shiny not-so-new toys are making in the way we live, in the objects we have around us." - http://nextberlin.eu/2012/01/what-is-post-digital/

I will be there.

Yours faithfully Official Blogger,

PS: proud to be mentioned in the website's header:

Jan 11, 2012

T-shaped people

During one edition of Business Cocktail, one thing mentioned by our invited entrepreneur, Andrei Rosca, made me reflect more on career path(s). He was talking about how entrepreneurs must leave behind their specialization and get knowledge from more domains in order to be able to succeed.

Is this a difficult trade-off or it becomes natural for entrepreneurial-blooded people?

If you would ask me some years ago what do I do, my answer was simple: Marketing. I studied Marketing, I was working in Marketing. And I was actually considering it so broad with all its sub-domains from which I was trying to choose one or few. I was a Marketing specialist. I still am. But now if you ask me the same question, the answer is not that simple anymore. What do I do? Marketing, Business Development, HR, Events, IT. Why? Somehow along the way I noticed how all these fields are complementary and I was trying to be able to get the whole picture, while gathering some knowledge and experience in each field. I am a curious and ambitious person, and I believe diversity is a strength. But what is this making me? 

Then I remember a conversation with Luca Sartoni who was looking at that point in time for T-shaped people to hire.  

Evrika! The best (new) concept to define this type of people who have one specialization, but also have (a shallower) knowledge and experience in other fields. Those who are able to understand things beyond their area of expertise, those who are highly adaptable and quick learners, those who are able to see the big picture, those who can build relations with people from other backgrounds, those who reduce the mystery of other crafts and help build a common language in the company, those who are able to spot cross-functional opportunities.

Yes, I am one of those! Being an entrepreneur it definitely helps to be a T-shaped person. But what about when you are an employee? Do/ Can employers value this typology and make the best of it? Are they able to spot it during hiring process or later on? 

I would love to hear some opinions on this from other business people.

(One interesting description in this video)